Doors are the gateway to our homes, making them a convenient way to come and go. But like everything in our home, they also require a little care and maintenance from time to time. If you overlook your door’s needs, it will politely ask for attention by squeaking or rattling. And, if you ignore these subtle signals too long, these dutiful doors can begin to stick and make it more difficult to come and go. Here are some simple ways to avoid a game of tug-of-war with your doors.
Before you try to fix a sticking door, consider the humidity. Moisture in the air can cause wooden doors to swell, but central air conditioning typically helps keep the indoor humidity in check. However, if you open windows on a humid day, take a steamy shower in the bathroom or run your kitchen dishwasher, these activities can definitely spike the humidity levels in your home. If you have recently experienced any of these situations, you’re in luck because your door problem might actually resolve itself on its own as the air dries out.
Do your door hinges squeal like a pig? Pencil lead – but graphite – is probably the best way to silence door creaks and squeaks. Using oil or WD-40® might stop the noise, but it can attract dust and will leave a mess. Remove one hinge pin at a time, rub the entire surface with a sharpened pencil lead, and then replace the pin. Repeat this with the remaining hinge pins and you will now have a quiet door!
When you find it difficult inserting your key into the lock, or you’re struggling to get your key to turn, consider using more graphite. Make your own by crushing pencil lead or purchase it from the hardware store. This product comes in a squeeze tube, which makes it easy to squirt a small amount into the keyhole. Be sure to also place some on the key, insert it into the lock, and turn it back and forth several times to lubricate everything.
With these quick and simple fixes, you’ll have your doors swinging easy in no time!